(Phoenix, Ariz. – August 24, 2004) Attorney General Terry Goddard is warning Arizona residents to be wary of fraudulent home repair contractors offering their services to consumers who have experienced storm damage to their homes.
The monsoon season not only brings wind, rain and dust, these storms also attract unlicensed contractors, including roofers, pool companies, and landscapers, that offer inexpensive home repairs and improvements to residents who have been victims of recent storms. Many of these contractors stop by unexpectedly and say they have extra supplies they want to use up, or claim they have been working in the neighborhood and have time to fix any storm damage.
The consumer is given a verbal quote, but never a written estimate for the job. Once completed, the homeowner receives a final bill that is hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars more than the original quote. These contractors demand immediate payment, and in some cases refuse to leave, making the consumers feel pressured into paying the full amount.
The following are tips for Arizona consumers to follow when choosing a contractor:
- Be alert to any contractors, including roofers, pool companies and landscapers, that unexpectedly show up at your home after a storm.
- Be wary of contractors who take a “quick look” around your property, then say you need a major repair.
- Be cautious of contractors who claim they are working in the neighborhood and have time to fix your house or have leftover supplies they would like to use up.
- Hire a contractor that is licensed by the Arizona Registrar of Contractors.
- Get written estimates from several contractors.
- Make sure the scope of the project, the price and any other material terms are in a written contract.
- Request a list of references and check them before agreeing to hire a contractor.
- Never allow yourself to be hurried into making a decision. No reputable contractor will try to pressure you into hiring them.
If residents experience this type of activity, please report it to the Attorney General’s Office by visiting the Web site at www.azag.gov and submitting an online “Consumer Complaint” or call the Office at:
Phoenix Office Of The Attorney General
Tucson Office Of The Attorney General